Lost in the Movies (formerly The Dancing Image): Veronica Mars - "There's Got to Be a Morning After Pill" (season 3, episode 12)

Monday, July 15, 2019

Veronica Mars - "There's Got to Be a Morning After Pill" (season 3, episode 12)


Welcome to my viewing diary for Veronica Mars. I will cover each TV episode (and eventually the film), several days a week; this will conclude just as the revival (which I will also cover) premieres on Hulu. I have never seen this series before so there will be NO spoilers.

Story (aired on February 6, 2007/written by Jonathan Moskin, Phil Klemmer & John Enbom, story by Jonathan Moskin & David Mulei; directed by Tricia Brock): Terrorized by visions of Logan having sex with her mortal enemy Madison (who accidentally roofied and very purposefully slut-shamed her at the Casablancas party sophomore year), Veronica breaks up with Logan yet again. Ignoring his voicemails and Dick's admonitions (although Dick also is pissed to find out Logan slept with his ex), she sticks to her decision and even plots revenge against Madison. Watching the spoiled brat get a new Mercedes for her birthday, Veronica plots with Weevil to crush the car up into a little cube with the vanity plate placed atop it in her driveway. Only the intersection of a pregnancy crisis, an overreaching best friend, and a Christian preacher eventually change her mind. Bonnie Capistrano (Carlee Avers), whom we met as Tim's - and Dick's - girlfriend in previous episodes was secretly administered RU-486 and she hires Veronica to find out who terminated her pregnancy for her. This search leads Veronica to Capistrano Ministries, where she meets Carlee's father Reverand Ted (Chris Ellis), a staunch traditionalist who nonetheless rejoiced at the opportunity to become a grandfather - and grieved when he learned that his daughter miscarried. Veronica suspects his assistant Thurman Randolph (Vince Grant), who runs a pro-life snoop shop that sends pictures of women visiting the clinic to their family members. Thurman also wants to start his own ministry and would like to avoid a scandal. But it was Bonnie, not her father, who was betrayed by someone close to them: long-time pal and current roommate Phyllis (Toni Trucks) snuck the drug to Bonnie, fearing that her future would be compromised by a child. Ted holds Bonnie close and gently shushes her as she flies into a rage at her (former) friend, advising her that anger only makes things worse and forgiveness is all that can heal. And so, umbrella and second thoughts in hand, Veronica treks over to Weevil and asks him not to destroy Madison's car after all. Although he does have her permission to ventilate some tunafish through the A/C vent before he returns it.

My Response:
Who knew Madison's importance to the show would only grow after high school graduation? For the moment, she's the cause of Logan's and Veronica's rupture - and what a rupture it is, particularly for Logan. Having arranged their previous break-up with precise care to avoid maximizing the pain, now he's a complete mess. And as we cut from his bedroom brooding and drunken phone calls to the suicide case Keith is investigating, should we be even more worried? Speaking of the suicide case, I'm beginning to wonder - as the series very much hopes I will - whether the Dean's death was a family affair. The main question is, which family member? Is Mindy lying about the Volvo or was it stolen while she was busy at the Grande, and driven to Hearst for a hit job by either Cyrus' son Jason O'Dell (Jason Hopkins), whom Cyrus was planning to send to military school, or Cyrus' wayward brother-in-law, whom Keith finds breaking into the O'Dell house looking for items to sell to feed his meth habit? Mindy's call to Keith is reminiscent of how Woody used him throughout season two - somehow people have a way of seeing him not just as a hired detective but as a personal bodyguard, confidante, and fixer all rolled into one. The subsequent sequence, as Keith uneasily tries to navigate the complicated O'Dell dynamics while snooping around for clues (it looks like he finds eggshell on the windshield of the Volvo), complements the family drama of the Capistranos this episode. Speaking of families, Veronica reminds us - in a cough-and-you'll-miss-it moment of her voiceover - that Mac and Madison were swapped at birth. Is it possible that Mac will end up intervening to avenge her friend and finally expose her own long-dormant family secret in a single gesture? We don't see Mac in this episode; maybe they're saving her energy for a big one...

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